Letter to the editor: Not baby sitters

To the editor:

Is it hard to reconcile that “mortgage payment” you make to your child’s child care center? Why should you pay that much for them to just change his diaper all day? Why do they make so much money when you can barely make ends meet? Answer: Because none of that is true!

You should know that early childhood providers care for and teach your children because they have a passion for it. They are not in it for the money! A high-quality early childhood provider will have knowledge of child development. Your child’s teacher will observe, document and assess your child, and will take a developmentally appropriate approach to teaching each individual child. Your child’s teacher understands the importance of social, emotional and academic growth when planning meaningful lessons for your child. And they will support not only your child, but your family and our community.

And why do they offer so much, when you just need them to keep your child safe while you’re at work? Because these early years before kindergarten are critical to your child’s development. Because these people are teachers, real teachers. They are professionals who practice a code of ethics. Professionals with certifications, training and continued education. Until everyone knows what high-quality early childhood care and education look like, society will continue to think of us as baby sitters. Please spread the word. Early childhood education is a profession.

Amy Gottschamer,

president and spokesperson for Lawrence Chapter-Kansas Association for the Education of Young Children


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